Discount supermarket chain Aldi is offering free charging in Germany. The company has installed fast-charging stations at 50 locations for customers to use while they shop. IKEA also has plans to install free charging at its stores in Germany, and other retailers will likely do the same. While offering free e-juice helps businesses garner the attention of its EV-driving customers, it could also help encourage people to buy electric vehicles. Many are disappointed by Germany's lack of EV incentives, despite the country's goal of having 1 million EVs in operation by 2020. Read more at Automotive News Europe.
London will put an all-electric double-decker bus into service this year. London Mayor Boris Johnson announced the electric bus trial at the first ever Clean Bus Summit. The bus, made by BYD, will begin service in October. London has already deployed over 1,300 hybrid buses and retrofitted over 1,400 buses to reduce emissions since 2008. Mayor Johnson's goal is to cut buses' NOx emissions in half by the end of his term in 2016 compared to 2008 levels. Also at the Clean Bus Summit, a number of bus makers and banks committed to helping cities roll out fleets of ultra-low emission buses. Read more in the press release from London, and from BYD.
The US Department of Energy (DOE) is funding biofuel projects to the tune of $18 million. The DOE will award the funds to six projects in an effort to reduce the price of algae-based biofuels to less than $5 per gasoline gallon equivalent (gge). The DOE has a goal to get the price of algal biofuels to less than $3 per gge by 2030. The funds have been awarded to projects by Producing Algae and Co-Products for Energy at Colorado School of Mines, Marine Algae Industrialization Consortium at Duke University, Global Algae Innovations, Inc., Arizona State University, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and University of California, San Diego. Read more at Green Car Congress.
Munich, 6 July 2015. Clean and quiet transport across Munich: from today on, the 100% electric trucks from the BMW Group and the SCHERM group will be in service. This means the BMW Group will be the first automobile manufacturer in Europe to use a 40-ton electric truck for material transport on public roads. It was launched at the BMW Group Plant in Munich by Bavaria's Minister of Economic Affairs, Ilse Aigner.
The electric 40-ton truck – a model from the Dutch manufacturer Terberg – has successfully completed its first test drives. On 7 July, the car will go into regular operation and travel eight times a day between the SCHERM group logistics centre and the BMW Group plant in Munich. It will transport different vehicle components, such as shock absorbers, springs and steering systems.
The electric truck by the BMW Group and the SCHERM group will be exclusively charged with electricity from renewable sources. The combination of this and the alternative driveline means the 40-ton truck helps the environment while it is on the road – it's CO2-free, quiet and generates almost no fine particle pollution. Compared to a diesel engine truck, the electric truck will save 11.8 tons of CO2 annually. This is equivalent to the distance a BMW 320d Efficient Dynamics would travel when going around the world almost three times.
The truck battery takes three to four hours to charge. When fully charged, the vehicle has a range of up to 100 kilometres. Thus, the electric truck can theoretically complete a full production day without any additional recharging.
Bavaria's Minister for Economic Affairs, Ilse Aigner: "Bavaria is a leading industrial and research location. It is crucial that the Bavarian economy is also at the forefront in electric mobility. BMW is making an important contribution to this and is showing that you can succeed on the global market with sustainable products made by innovative companies."
Hermann Bohrer, Head of the BMW Group Plant in Munich: "With our electric truck, we are sending another strong signal for sustainable urban mobility. We are contributing to reducing emissions in the city and are proud to be the first automotive manufacturer in Europe to use an electric truck of this size to transport materials on public roads." Thus, the innovative truck is another valuable contribution to sustainable production.
Jürgen Maidl, Head of Logistics at BMW Group, emphasised the potential of the electric truck. "With this project we will gain valuable information on what will be possible with electric trucks in the future for city logistics. The BMW Group, along with our partner the SCHERM Group, is once again bravely embarking on a new journey and delivering pioneering work."
Kurt J. F. Scherm, CEO of the SCHERM group underlined: "As a supplier of transport solutions, it is especially important to us to offer sustainable transport. The electric truck is the first step towards CO2-reduced transport logistics. In addition, this innovative truck is charged with 100% green energy."
Urban mobility – and for the BMW Group this also includes urban logistics and transport — is a topic with great future potential. Since the end of 2013, the BMW i brand has been on the market. In addition, the company has launched its successful car-sharing programme DriveNow and established it in international cities. The BMW i3 vehicles are currently being introduced into the DriveNow fleets step by step.